Since Shawn died, I have been given several books to read. As I was completing the 2014-15 ornaments, my eyes kept landing on this book. I have no idea where it came from, when I received it or from whom. Unusually, I can picture events surrounding a situation, and remember. Hope Again, by Charles R. Swindoll. I find it kind of interesting, as I was sending out the last of the ornaments, that “Hope” seemed to be a common theme, popping into my days.
Here is a quote from page 17 : “Two words will help when you run low on hope: accept and trust. Accept the mystery of hardship, suffering, misfortune or mistreatment. Don’t try to understand or explain it. Accept it. Then deliberately trust God to protect you by His power from this moment to the dawning of eternity” Peter was mentioned, referring to the guilt he must have had. I am very thankful for this apostle. I do not understand how he moved beyond his guilt, after denying Christ. Thank God, he did. He, also, had many other difficulties. He had a way of moving forward that gives me hope. His perseverance gives me something to strive for.
I seem to have many moments when I am starting to walk on the water, only to find myself getting sucked down into the depths of my guilt and despair. Peter received the hand of love from Jesus, surely it is there for me, as well. On page 76-77, there is a prayer; “A Prayer for Hope Beyond Guilt”. The last paragraph: “Then, with those joyful thoughts to spur us on, slay the dragon of guilt within us so we might enjoy, as never before, Your ultimate embrace. Through Christ I pray. Amen”
My head knows things my heart cannot come to grips with, yet. Back in November, I was visiting a dear couple who wanted me to understand that giving the doctors the choice to shut the machines off or the flip side: was I selfishly keeping Shawn alive-God ultimately was in charge. He could have healed Shawn’s many issues, but He chose not to. It was God who took Shawn’s spirit. The outcome is in God’s hands. I do not think they were chastising me, they were just trying to help. It didn’t hurt when they said this. Nope, I did not get mad. Nope, I did not become defensive. Strange, there was some sort of calm, in my heart. Would this feeling (?) last ? The couple also wanted me to think on what it is like for Shawn, now. Happy, whole and at peace. This is an area I have not let myself think much about. I do not understand the heaven side. I am afraid I will cling too tightly to my imaginings and be wrong. I did ask them if they thought Shawn was upset with me -whether I made the choice-per doctors request. They wanted me to realize; God makes the ultimate decisions. It is not my place to take that from Him. The sting of death is removed, Shawn would not hate me. When I see him on the other side he will welcome me with open arms and want to share with me all the wonders to behold The other thing I learned: God will work what He needs done. I am not His fixer. There are several situations I need to let go. I need to just be myself and God will use me how and when He needs.
When I first heard the song, “Trust In You”, by Lauren Daigle, it was like an elephant stepped on my chest. I keep replaying this song, in hopes my head and heart will, finally, come together in acceptance of God’s working in my life.
There are many times in a given day when that true knowing, of Shawn’s goneness, starts creeping in. Oh, ~~~let me explain it this way: my brother was helping me with a picture project. As I was following his instructions, I saw several of Shawn’s photos. The wind was knocked out of my lungs. I started to know that photos or videos or voice recordings, would not bring Shawn back. Yes, my head knows this~~~my heart is not there yet. I do know that I do not use as much tissue, as I did when Shawn first died. I have had some joy~filled moments. I have managed to keep working. I am just one of God’s slow accepters.
I have a cute little tell that makes me chuckle.
I am not sure how many of you out there are school bus drivers, but I am pretty sure most of us school bus drivers get very tired of hearing our passengers use the “f” word. Many times a day I am clearing my throat and making clear on the PA system that there are better word choices. This past Friday, I had 2 more stops before picking up my last passengers. My 3rd grade passenger told me that another passenger “farted”~~~another “f” word I do not like. I told my passenger, as she plugged her nose, “Please do not use the “f” word. She stuttered that she never uses the “f”. Then we heard a sound and the kindy let us know she “farted”, again. I asked all of them to stop using the “f” word. They were so puzzled. So, I reminded them that the word “fluff” would be a better word choice. They started laughing with me. They were making fun of my word choices. They decided fluff seemed, not right. After a few moments of word searching, my passengers came up with a new word. Another noise came from the kindy~~~this one filled the air, as I opened my window, the 3rd grader said, “Mrs. K, J…… gassed, again !!!” We were laughing so hard. The phrase was repeated several times. They decided they liked it better than the “f” word. They could not wait to get to their stops and tell their parents. Again, the kindy made a noise. She proudly exclaimed, “Mrs. K, I gassed again !!!”
I earned another badge !!! Thanks FitBit !!!“You have walked 990 lifetime miles~the entire length of New Zealand. And while that country’s native bird the Kiwi might be flightless, you, my friend, are really taking off.” How cool is that ? I heard a report that folks were not doing well with their fitness trackers. Let me tell you what~~~I love my FitBit Zip !!! It has been a wonderful way of helping me accomplish a goal. I find myself checking, often, in a day, to see how close I am to my 10,000 step goal. It is a blast !!!